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Monument to General James Edward Oglethorpe 
Unveiled at Savannah, Ga., Nov. 23, 1 9i0 



Georgia Historical Society 


A History of the Erection and 
Dedication of the Monument 


Gen'l James Edward Oglethorpe 

Unveiled in Savannah, Ga., November 23, 1910» 

Published by the Georgia Historical Society. 

Savannah, Ga. 

The Morning News 



In order to preserve and perpetuate in collected form the his- 
tory of the monument to the memory of General James Edward 
Oglethorpe which was unveiled and dedicated with appropriate 
ceremonies in Savannah, Ga., November 23, 1910, the Georgia His- 
torical Society publishes this volume as a contribution to the his- 
tory of our State. 

The monument itself is but the concrete expression of a sen- 
timent which for nearly two centuries has lived in the hearts of 
Georgians, and the fact that the work has been so long delayed, 
was only due to a desire to erect a memorial whose proportions 
and finish should be in keeping with the dignity and character 
of the heroic founder of Georgia. 

The following pages set forth such facts concerning the monu- 
ment itself and such features connected with its dedication as 
will be of interest to the historian of the future. It was deemed 
appropriate by those having the matter in charge to set apart 
three days, November 23, 24 and 25, for the celebration of the 
occasion, and inasmuch as Oglethorpe was essentially a soldier, 
it was decided to have the exercises chiefly of a military charac- 
ter. A number of pictorial illustrations have been included, which 
it is hoped, will serve to perpetuate in visible form some of the 
leading features of this historic occasion. 

Committee on Publishing and Printing. 


On the 18th day of May, 1901, a charter was granted by 
the Superior Court of Chatham County to the Oglethorpe 
Monument Association. This Association was formed by 
six representatives each from the Georgia Society of Colonial 
Dames of America, the Sons of the Revolution, the Daught- 
ers of the American Revolution, and the Society of Colonial 
Wars. Its first meeting was held on Nov. 28, 1902, and the 
object of the Association was to combine the efforts of these 
four patriotic societies toward the raising of funds for the 
erection of a suitable memorial in Savannah to the memory 
of the truly great man who was the founder of our State. 

Tlie moneys which some of the various societies had been 
raising separately, were turned into the common treasury 
of the Association, and increased in like manner from time 
to time until they amounted, in the year 1905, to approxi- 
mately $5,000. 

In the summer of that year, at the request of the president 
of the Colonial Dames, the representatives from Chatham 
County in the Legislature took up the matter of securing 
State recognition and aid for the monument, and on July 
12, 1905, a joint resolution was introduced in the House to 
provide for the erection of a monument. This resolution 
was referred to the Committee on Appropriations and hav- 
ing been more than once voted down in the committee, was 
finally reported back favorably on August 10, 1905, with the 
recommendation that the sum of $15,000 be appropriated 
for the purpose, and the resolution received its second 
reading. Nothing further was done in regard to it at that 

During the next session, in the summer of 1906, the reso- 
lution met with a stormy and checkered career and was 
several times apparently hopelessly shipwrecked before 
gaining its final passage. 

Under resolution introduced in the House June 27, 1906, 
Honorable Walter G. Charlton was invited to address a 
joint session of the General Assembly on the life and ser- 
vices of General Oglethorpe, and this address was delivered 
a short time afterw^ard. 

On August 2, 1906, the bill carrying the appropriation of 
$15,000 for the monument came up for passage. It was 

6 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

referred to the Committee of the Whole, where it was only 
saved from defeat by the adoption of an amendment offered 
by its friends, providing that the monument should be 
erected in Chippewa Square and reciting that the title to 
said square was in the State of Georgia. The committee 
then reported the bill back favorably as amended. 

The report of tke committee was agreed to, but on the 
passage of the bill by aye and nay vote it was apparent 
that it could not pass, and "before the vote could be an- 
nounced the bill was tabled on motion of Mr. Anderson of 

On Saturday, August 11th, the bill was, on motion, taken 
from the table for the purpose of declaring the vote there- 
on, which was announced to be ayes 70, nays 51, and the bill 
having failed to receive the requisite constitutional majority 
was declared to be lost. On motion the action of the House 
in defeating the bill was then re-considered. 

A resolution was immediately introduced and referred to 
the Rules Committee to make the bill a Special Order for 
August 13th. 

On the morning of August 13th, the last day when the 
bill could be considered by the House, the Rules Committee 
submitted a report making the bill a Special Order for that 
day. This was voted down by the House. 

At the afternoon session of August 13th, on motion of 
Mr. Flynt of Spalding, by yea and nay vote of 83 to 25 
the House re-considered its action of the morning in refus- 
ing to make a Special Order, and adopted the Rules Com- 
mittee's report. The bill was then taken up for passage, 
and a substitute bill offered by the Chatham delegation was 
passed by a vote of 91 to 35. 

The bill was immediately transmitted to the Senate and 
received its first reading there the same afternoon. The 
next morning, August 14th, it was reported favorably by 
the Senate Committee on Appropriations and received its 
second reading, and on the afternoon of August 15th, the 
last day of the Legislative session of 1906, was placed on 
its passage and finally enacted into law. 

It was approved by Governor Terrell on August 16th, 
1906, and the following Commission was appointed by him 
to take charge of the work in the name of the State and 
carry it on to completion : 

Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, Chairman, 
Hon. P. A. Stovall, 
Hon. A. A. Lawrence. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 

Hon, Walter G. Charlton, 
Hon. P. W. Meldrim, 
Hon. J. H. Estill, 
Col. A. R. Lawton, 

All of Savannah; 
Hon. R. E. Park, 
Hon. Allen D. Candler, 
Hon. W. G. Cooper, 

All of Atlanta ; 
Hon. Joseph R. Lamar, of Augusta, 
Hon. H. F. Dunwoody, of Brunswick. 
Hon. J. H. Estill died during the administration of Gov. 
Hoke Smith, who appointed Hon. R. J. Davant of Savannah 
in his place. Hons. R. E. Park and Allen D. Candler also 
died, and Gov. Joseph M. Brown appointed as their suc- 
seccors Wymberley J, De Renne and J. Florance Minis, 
both of Savannah. 

The Act as passed by the Legislature of 1906 read as 

follows : 


Whereas, the State of Georgia contains no fitting memorial to 
its founder and first Governor, that great soldier, statesman and 
philanthropist, General James Oglethorpe; and, 

2nd. Whereas, it is now verging on two centuries since he 
founded and fostered this people, protected and defended them 
from dissension within, and invasion without, and fitted Georgia 
for its great career as a sovereign State, and 

3rd. Whereas, It is eminently fitting and desirable that the 
people of this State shall make manifest their veneration, loyalty 
and gratitude for the life and services of that great man by the 
erection of a proper memorial or monument to the memory of 
its distinguished founder, in the city in which he first established 
the youngest of the American colonies, and which thus became 
the cradle of Georgia; and, 

4th. Whereas, The Oglethorpe Monument Association, com- 
posed of members of the various patriotic societies in this State, 
has been incorporated for this purpose and has raised by popular 
subscription a considerable sum, therefore; 

5th. Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Sen- 
ate concurring. That the sum of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000) 
be, and the same is, hereby set aside and appropriated from 
money in the treasury, not otherwise appropriated, for the pur- 
pose of erecting an adequate memorial, or monument, to General 
James Oglethorpe in the city of Savannah; the said memorial or 
monument, to be erected in Chippewa Square in said City, the ti- 
tle to said square being owned by the State. The amount hereby 
appropriated, the sum of seventy-five hundred dollars shall be 
available in the year 1907^ and the sum of seventy-five hundred 
dollars shall be available in the year 1908. This appropriation 
shall be expended by and under the direction, supervision and 
control of the Governor of the State, and upon warrants drawn 

8 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

by him upon the Treasury accordingly. The Governor of the 
State is hereby authorized to permit the Oglethorpe Monument 
Association to be associated in the work herein provided for, and 
to augment this appropriation by such additional amount as said 
Oglethorpe Monument Association maj' desire to contribute; pro- 
vided that the same shall be not less than $5,000 and that said 
memorial or monument, shall have upon it, either inscribed or 
raised, or by tablet, the words: 

"Erected by the State of Georgia to the memory of its founder, 
the great soldier, eminent statesman and celebrated philanthro- 
pist, General James Oglethorpe, who in this City on the 12th day 
of February A. D. 1733, established the Colony of Georgia." 

Resolved further, by the authority aforesaid. That all laws and 
parts of laws in conflict with this resolution be, and the same are 
hereby repealed. Approved August 20th, 1906. 

This Act was amended by a later Act approved July 20th, 
1909. This amending Act changed the wording of the in- 
scription to be placed on the monument and provided that 
it should read as follows : 

"Erected by the State of Georgia, the City of Savannah and the 
patriotic societies of the State to the memory of the great sol- 
dier, eminent statesman and famous philanthropist. General James 
Edward Oglethorpe, who in this City on the 12th daj^ of February 
A. D. 1733 founded and established the Colony of Georgia." 

This amending Act also provided for the celebration of 
the unveiling of the monument as follows : 

Be it further resolved, T^hat the Governor of this State be and 
he is hereby requested to cause the attendance of the military 
forces of this State to participate in the ceremonies attending the 
unveiling of said monument when the same shall take place, and 
to invite the attendance and participation of the Executive and 
military forces of our neighboring sister States; the States of 
South Carolina and Florida, whose early history is closely inter- 
woven v.'ith our own, and between which the Colony founded by 
Oglethorpe was designed to serve as a military barrier, and the 
States of Alabama and Mississippi, whose domains formed a part 
of the original territory of the Colony of Georgia. 

The Oglethorpe Monument Commission began its work 
in the autumn of 1906, and after a considerable period of in- 
vestigation and deliberation, placed the execution of the 
work in the hands of the celebrated sculptor, Mr. Daniel 
Chester French, who associated with him Mr. Henry Bacon, 
one of the most prominent architects of New York City. 

It became apparent to the Commission, from the outset, 
that a suitable memorial could not be obtained with the 
funds then available, and that the appropriation from the 
State would have to be supplemented from outside sources, 
and it was decided to rely upon such further assistance and 

To General Javies Edxcard Oglethorpe . 

not to attempt to confine the monument to the funds then 
in the hands of the Commission and in the treasury of the 
Oglethorpe Monument Association. 

The chairman and other members of the Commission ap- 
peared before the City Council of Savannah on May 10, 
1909, and presented a petition for an appropriation of 
$15,000 toward the erection of a suitable memorial. This 
was granted and the City of Savannah appropriated the sum 
of $15,000, of which it was provided that the sum of $12,000 
should be used by the Commission for the erection of the 
monument, and $3,000 should be utilized in the preparation 
of the site and toward expenses of the unveiling. The funds 
thus received v/ere further supplemented by additional sub- 
scriptions from the various patriotic societies mentioned 
above and from other organizations as well as from indi- 
vidual citizens ; thus raising the total amount in the hands 
of the Commission, available for the monument and its sur- 
roundings, up to the sum of $38,000, for which amount the 
contract had been made by the Commission with the 
sculptor, Mr. French. 

ir33 1910 



Ceremonies at the Dedication of the Monument 


General James Edward Oglethorpe 


NOVEMBER 23, 24, 25, 1910. 

ColonlAl Seal of Georgia. 

Present Seal of Georsila. 



General James Edward Oglethorpe, son of Sir Theophil- 
us and Eleanor (Wall) Oglethorpe, was born in England 
December 22, 1696. At an early age he entered Corpus 
Christi College, Oxford, but he soon left that institution 
for an active military life. Having served several years in 
the British army, under the Duke of Marlborough, he be- 
came secretary and aid-de-camp to the famous Prince 
Eugene of Savoy, with whom he learned the art of war. 

In 1718 he returned to his estate in England, and in 1722 
was elected to parliament from the county of Surrey. He 
soon became interested in the reformation of abuses which 
disgraced prison life at that time, and his sympathies were 
especially engaged for the relief of the honest but unfortu- 
nate debtors w^ho were thrown into prison. He was made 
chairman of a commission to investigate these abuses, and 
it occurred to him that a colony could be established for 
these people in America between the Carolinas and the 
troublesome Spaniards, Who claimed all the territory south 
of the Savannah river. A company was organized, a char- 
ter obtained, and Oglethorpe with about one hundred and 
thirty passengers set sail for America November 17, 1732", 
and on February 12, 1733 he landed at the present site of 
Savannah, where he found a small tribe of Indians with 
Tomochichi as chief. 

Having made friends with the Indians, he laid out the 
town, fortified it, and built many houses. 

In 1734 Oglethorpe sailed for England, taking with him 
Tomochichi and several other Indian chiefs to impress them 
with England's power. In 1736 he returned to Georgia 
and engaged in the active work of the colony. He laid out 
Augusta, made treaties of friendship with the Indians, 
founded Frederica and fortified it. In 1740 he made a bold 
attack upon the Spaniards at St. Augustine, but owing to 
the strength of the fort and to sickness in his army he 
abandoned the siege. 

At the battle of Bloody Marsh in 1742, he drove the Span- 
iards from Georgia, and established the English claim to 
the territory. 

12 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

On July 23, 1743, ten and a half years after his first land- 
ing Oglethorpe set sail for England, never to return. In 
1744 he was married to Elizabeth Wright of Cranham Hall. 
After a brief experience in the British army in 1745, he re- 
tired from active service to his estate, where he spent the 
remainder of his long life, "the soul of honor, the embodi- 
ment of loyalty and valor, and the model of manly grace 
and courtesy." He died at the age of eighty-nine years on 
July 1, 1785, and was buried in Cranham church. 

Fitting indeed it is that Georgia should perpetuate in 
enduring stone and bronze the virtues of her brave and he- 
roic founder, and upon the pedestal of his monument in- 
scribe in imperishable letters the name of OGLETHORPE. 

"Thy great example shall through ages shine, 
A favorite theme with poet and divine; 
To all unborn thy merits shall proclaim, 
And add new honors to thy deathless name." 



The Oglethorpe Monument Association was chartered 
by the Superior Court of Chatham County, May 18, 1901. 
This Association was formed by six representatives each, 
from the Georgia Society of Colonial Dames of America, 
the Sons of the American Revolution, the Daughters of the 
American Revolution, and the Society of Colonial Wars. 
Its object was to combine the efforts of these four patriotic 
societies toward raising the funds for the erection of a 
suitable memorial in Savannah to General James Edward 
Oglethorpe, the founder of the colony of Georgia. 

In the summer of 1905, the representatives from Chatham 
county in the Legislature took up the matter of securing 
state recognition and aid for the monument, and introduced 
a bill for the appropriation of $15,000 for the purpose. Tliis 
appropriation was made by the Legislature in the summer 
of 1906, and a commission was appointed by the Governor 
to take charge of the work in the name of the state. 

The Commission consisted of Hon. J. Randolph Ander- 
son, chairman, Hons. P. A. Stovall, A. A. Lawrence, Walter 
G. Charlton, P. W. Meldrim, J. H. Estill and Col. A. R. 
Lawton, of Savannah ; Hons. R. E. Park, State Treasurer, 
Allen D. Candler and W. G. Cooper, all of Atlanta; Hon. 
Jos. R. Lamar, of Augusta, and Hon. H. F. Dunwoody, of 

The Commission entrusted the execution of the work to 
the celebrated sculptor, Daniel Chester French, who asso- 
ciated with him Mr. Henry Bacon, one of the most promi- 
nent architects of New York City. On May 10, 1909, the 
City of Savannah, on the application of the Commission, 
appropriated $15,000 to the monument, of which it was pro- 
vided that $12,000 should be used for the erection of the 
monument, and $3,000 should be utilized in the preparation 
of the site and towards the expenses of the unveiling. 

The monument is now completed, and consists of a he- 
roic statue of General Oglethorpe in bronze in the uniform 
of a British General of the period. The figure is about 
ten feet in height, and stands upon a pink-gray marble ped- 
estal or die upon a base of the same material. The base 

X4 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

is carved wHh g-arlands of flowers and of pine cones resting 
upon palmetto leaves, and is cornered by four lions ram- 
pant, each holding a shield. Upon one of these shields is 
carved the Coat of Arms of Oglethorpe, and upon the others 
the Coats of Arms or Great Seals of the Colony of Georgia, 
of the State of Georgia, and of the City of Savananh. The 
general design of the monument is Italian renaissance, and 
has a stone bench on either side. The northern and south- 
ern ends of the plot in which the monument stands are 
closed by an exhedra in Indiana limestone, backed by low 

iBrtixi4:<.r d&> ^yHSi^ Oder yCorU^f^^ 'f^TL. o'ti<AtJ:a^ d>onn 

Memorial Seat of Oglethorpe, Savannah, Ga, 

Tomochichi Monument, Savannah, Ga. 

To General James Edward Oglelhorpe. 15 



INVOCATION", by Rt. Rev. F. F. Reese, Bishop of Geor- 

ADDRESS, by Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, Chairman 
Oglethorpe Monument Commission, on the History of 
of the Monument. 

ADDRESS, by Acting British Ambassador, Hon A. Mit- 
chell Innes. 

ADDRESS, by Hon. Walter G. Charlton, on the Life, Char- 
acter and Services of Oglethorpe, 

cy Joseph M. Brown, Governor of Georgia, assisted by 
the President of the Georgia Society of Colonial Dames 
of America. 

Extension by the Governors of Georgia, South Carolina 
and Alabama; Sixteen Companies of U. S. Regulars, 
Forty Companies of State Troops, Three Companies of 
Blue Jackets, and Marines from U. S. Cruiser Birming- 


(In Park Extension.) 

Cavalry Tilt. 

U. S. Regulars vs. Georgia Troops. 

Two Teams of Six Men, Eleventh U. S. Cavalry. 

Two Teams of Six Men, Georgia Hussars. 

Two Teams of Six Men, Liberty Independent Troop. 

One Team of Six Men, Governor's Horse Guards. 


(Athletic Park.) 

Military Rough Riders Exhibition and Spectacular Exer- 

Cavalry Marching Drill, Bareback Hurdling, Roman Rid- 
ing, etc., by selected troop of Eleventh Cavalry, U. S. A. 

Spectacular Exhibition Drill, Musical Drills, by Seven- 
teenth Infantry, U. S. A. 

j6 a History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 


(Grand Stand on Waters Road.) 

Great Motorcycle Races around Grand Prize Automobile 


(Fifty entries expected.) 

FIRST RACE — One lap around the course. Open to any 
Savannah-owned Motorcycle, single cylinder type. 
(Twenty-two entries.) Starts on five seconds inter- 
vals. Prizes, Three Silver Cups. 

SECOND RACE — Two laps around the course. Open to 
any amateur rider and any type of Motorcycle. (Twelve 
entries.) Flying start, all at once. Prizes, Three 
Copper Cups. 

THIRD RACE — Three laps around the course. Open to 
Savannah-owned machines of belt-driven type, single 
cylinder. (Fifty entries expected.) Starts on five 
seconds intervals. Prizes, Three Silver Cups. 

Grand Military Gymkhana. 

Of U. S. Regulars. High Jumping, mounted ; Equipment 
Race; Conical Wall-tent Pitching; Hasty Intrenching; Po- 
tato Race by Mounted Cavalry; Wall Scaling, and other 
exciting military field sports and exercises. 


(Athletic Park.) 


Same as on Wednesday evening. 


(Park Extension.) 

BATTLE EXERCISES— By U. S. Regulars. Attack by 
two battalions Seventeenth Infantry and one squadron 
Eleventh Cavalry upon the Coast Artillery Corps, hold- 
ing and defending the southern line of Forsyth Park. 

From left to right : Hon. Joseph M. Brown. Governor of Georgia: Hon. A. Mitchell Innes, 
Acting British Ambassador: Hon. B. B. Comer, Governor of Alabama: Chancellor D. C. Bar- 
row of the University of Georgia: Senator Joseph M. Terrell: Senator A. 0. Bacon: Col. A. 
M. Brookfield. Resident British Consul: and Hon. Charles G. Edwards, M. C. 

Assembling: The Governor and his Staff. 


The day was an ideal one for the historic occasion. A 
cloudless autumnal sky showered the splendors of a soft 
Southern sun upon a scene of rare impressiveness and 
beauty. State and national flags, banners and gay bunting, 
lent an added charm to the rich foliage of crimson and 
gold, while brilliant military uniforms and handsome dress 
completed a picture worthy of a painter's brush. The 
monument itself in mute dignity, and veiled with the flags 
of Georgia and England united, rose from the centre of 
Cliippewa square, and around its base were grouped the 
distinguished representatives of a sentiment which at last 
had found concrete expression from the hearts of an appre- 
ciative people in enduring marble and bronze. On the 
left was the Commission appointed by the state to execute 
the work. By their side sat the sculptor, Daniel Chester 
French, whose genius and artistic skill had created the 
bronze statue of Georgia's heroic founder, soon to be un- 
veiled, and by his side was Mr. Henry Bacon, the architect 
who designed the marble and stone setting for the main 
ligure itself. In front sat His Excellency, Joseph M. 
Brown, the Governor of Georgia with his staff, and by 
his side in appropriate position the Hon. A. Mitchell Innes, 
aicting British Ambassador and representative of the Court 
of St. James. Governor B. B. Comer of Alabama with his 
staff fittingly represented Georgia's territorial daughter to 
the west. Hon. Augustus O. Bacon, Georgia's senior sen- 
ator, and Hon. Joseph M. Terrell, the junior senator and 
former Governor, sat next, with Chancellor David C. Bar- 
row of the University of Georgia, Hon. Charles G. Ed- 
wards, member of Congress, Col. Daniel C. Kingman of 
the U. S. Engineers, and other distinguished visitors. 

Back of these were grouped in reserved seats the Society 
of Colonial Dames of America, the Daughters of the Ameri- 
can Revolution, The Sons of the Revolution, The Society 
of Colonial Wars, The Georgia Society of the Cincinnati, 
the Georgia Historical Society, representatives of the 
United Confederate Veterans, the Hibernia, Victoria, and 
St. Andrew's Societies ; representatives of the Board of 

/S A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

Trade, Chamber of Commerce, the Cotton Exchange, the 
Retail Merchants' Association; the General Committee of 
the Oglethorpe Monument Celebration, The Daughters of 
the Confederacy, the Board of Aldermen, the County Com- 
missioners, the Park and Tree Commission, the City and 
County Officials, Solomon's Lodge of Masons, and many 
other guests. 

Around these were grouped the various military com- 
panies and thousands of citizens, completely filling the 
square and the adjacent streets. The gathering of these 
bodies amidst the strains of martial music was as inspir- 
ing as it was dignified and orderly. When all was in readi- 
ness the Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, the Chairman of the 
Commission, conducted to the platform the Rt. Rev. F. F. 
Reese, the Episcopal Bishop of Georgia, who, after calling 
upon all to stand and join in the Lord's Prayer, delivered 
the following invocation: 


"Almighty God, who art the author and giver of all good 
things, and who dost govern all things in Heaven and 
earth, we give Thee hearty thanks for the spirit of brave 
adventure to which this state owes its birth, and especially 
for the courage and spirit of benevolence of thy servant, 
James Edward Oglethorpe, its founder, whom we com- 
memorate this day. And we beseech Thee to accept and 
bless this memorial as the expression of our gratitude for 
his labor and sacrifice for the poor and unfortunate. Grant 
to all of us, the people of this state, who have entered into 
his labor and the labors of other men, that we may be so 
faithful to our trust as citizens of this commonwealth, that 
peace and happiness, truth and justice, religion and piety 
may be established among us for all generations. And may 
Thy holy Avill be done and Thy kingdom come among us 
and among all the people of our land, to Thy glory and the 
everlasting salvation of all men ; through Jesus Christ, our 
Lord. Amen." 


Mr. Anderson then in behalf of the Commission deliver- 
ing the monument into the hands of the state, made the 
following address: 

The Invocation by Rt. Rev. F. F. Reese. 

1 1th U. S. Cavalry. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. ig 

"We have met here today to celebrate the successful 
attainment of a great object which for many, many years 
has been dear to the hearts of the people of our state. For 
nearly a century successive generations of Georgians have 
agitated and hoped for the erection of a suitable memorial 
to the great soldier, statesman and philanthropist who cheer- 
fully sacrificed the comforts of his home and laid aside a 
most prominent position and distinguished career in England 
to lead his chosen band of followers across the stormy 
wastes of the Ocean. As Goldsmith says : 

" 'To distant climes, a dreary scene 

Where half the convex world intrudes between 
Through torrid tracts, with fainting steps they go 
Where wild Altama murmurs to their woe.' 

"Landing upon this bluff, he pitched his tent and estab- 
lished on the verge of an unexplored wilderness the begin- 
nings of the colony of Georgia^the state which we, her 
sons, today acclaim with loving pride as the Empire State 
of the South ; the largest, and in material resources, poten- 
tially perhaps the greatest of all these American states east 
of the Mississippi. 

"It is often said that we live today in a wholly material- 
istic age, and that our people are so entirely absorbed in 
the work of the present and in plans for the future that 
they have no time for thoughts of the past and but scant 
respect for its deeds ; but this distinguished assemblage de- 
monstrates that firmly implanted within us we still possess 
the deeply rooted conviction of the sturdy Anglo-Saxon 
stock from which we sprung, that a people without monu- 
ments is a people without a history. History itself indeed 
shows us that a people without monuments is a people 
without civilization and without progress. No race and 
no people which have exhibited the trait of commemorating 
in storied marble or enduring bronze the deeds and virtues 
of its departed heroes has ever failed to mightily sway the 
destinies of mankind ; and no people or race which has 
failed to do so has ever left more than a passing imprint on 
the sands of time. 

"Of all the great Englishmen who had a hand in the dis- 
covery or in the colonization of this continent none is more 
worthy of being honored by the whole American people 
than he to whose memory we are paying tribute today; 
for aside from all other reasons, we know that to his for- 

20 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Motiument 

titude, to his daring and military skill is due the fact 
that the dominant language and civilization of North 
America today is English instead of Spanish. To us Geor- 
gians he stands in a closer and dearer relation, for it was 
upon our soil he wrought out his great work and laid deep 
and strong the enduring foundations of our state. And, 
therefore, our people have always gratefully and affection- 
ately revered his memory and will do so till time shall be 
no more. In the early days while he was still in life the 
people of the colony made annual celebration of his natal 
day; and since his death the continued desire has existed 
to erect a proper tribute to his memory. 

"Time does not permit of my making mention here of 
the various efforts that at different periods have been made 
in this direction nor of how the hopes of our people were 
thwarted. As the years rolled on these efforts became 
more frequent and more earnest, but civil war, pestilence 
and panic all exerted their baleful effect to postpone once 
and again the desired day and balked the efforts of our 
people and of the state itself. I am informed that in the 
year 1860 the lower House of the General Assembly passed 
a bill carrying an appropriation for a monument to Gen. 
Oglethorpe, but the fast gathering clouds of the great war 
between the states were already casting their menacing 
shadows over the land ; and the Senate felt unable to enact 
the measure into law. 

"Many times in the past have patriotic Georgians urged 
the erection of a fitting monument to Gen. Oglethorpe but 
it had been reserved to our own day and to our own gene- 
ration to see this long-cherished and long-deferred hope 
of our people fulfilled. Today marks an important event 
in our state's history. At last the cherished dream has be- 
come a reality, the long-deferred hope has ripened into ful- 
fillment and Georgia has gathered here today her sons and 
daughters from Rabun Gap to Tybee Light, and by act of 
her General Assembly has caused her chief executive and a 
large part of the military forces of the state to participate 
in these unveiling ceremonies and to give to them a solem- 
nity and impressiveness worthy of the dignity of the state 
and of the memory of the truly great man who was its 

"Tlie day and the occasion are all the more auspicious be- 
cause we are honored by the presence of the acting ambas- 
sador from the Court of St. James to this country, who is 
here to officially represent the British government and take 

To General James Edivard Oglethorpe. 

part in doing honor to the memory of a man of whom both 
countries have just reasons to be proud. We are also honor- 
ed by the presence of the chief executive of our sister state 
of Alabama, whose early history is so closely interwoven 
with our own ; as well as by representatives of the federal 
government in the presence of the officers and men of a 
large body of troops and of ships of war. 

"In the Legislature of 1905 and 1906, of which I was a 
member, the state determined that the time had at last 
come when this monument should be erected. By an act 
approved Aug. 16, 1906, the state was to be supplemented by 
the funds already raised by the Oglethorpe monument Asso- 
ciation, and such other funds as it and the various patriotic 
societies of the state composing it, and other parties, might 
contribute. The distinguished gentleman who was then 
Governor of Georgia, and who is now our junior United 
States senator, and present with us today, appointed a Com- 
mission to carry out the work in the name and on behalf of 
the state, and did me the honor to appoint me as its chair- 
man. On behalf of the Commission, I now have the honor 
to make personal report before this audience to the present 
chief executive of our state as to the actions of the Commis- 

"Realizing, sir, that such a memorial, as our people de- 
sired could not be had with the funds then available, the 
Commission sought and obtained from the municipality of 
Savannah the additional sum of $12,000 for the monument 
and a further sum to aid in the ceremonies of the unveiling. 
The Commission was very fortunate in being able to enlist 
the interest and obtain the services of the talented gentle- 
man who is with us today, the great sculptor, Daniel Ches- 
ter French, who is now generally regarded in this country 
as the greatest of all living American sculptors. I am 
proud and happy also to be able to report that he himself 
considers this monument to be the finest piece of work he 
has ever done. 

"The monument, sir, is now completed and the statue is 
about to be unveiled by your excellency. The Commission 
has completed its labors in this behalf and is now ready to 
deliver the monument into the care of the city of Savannah 
to be preserved for the people of this state." 

22 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 


After the address of Mr. Anderson, the Hon. A. Mitchell 
Innes, the acting British Ambassador and representative 
of the Court of St. James, spoke as follows : 

"Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen : 

"It is with peculiar pleasure that I have come among 
you today to do honor to the brave and accomplished gen- 
tleman, whose statue decorates this spot. Oglethorpe was 
in every way a fitting founder of the great state, to which 
he alluded as 'the little colony now called Georgia.' 

"What would he think if he could return to the city of 
Savannah today and see how great a forest his little 
plantation has grown? When he landed at Charlestown 
nearly two hundred years ago in the good ship Anne, of 
about two hundred tons burden, with his company of 130 
souls, who must have been tightly packed in the small craft, 
not the most vivid imagination could have pictured the bril- 
liant future which that adventurous voyage inaugurated. 

"Nine years later, indeed, the opposition to the paternal 
government of Oglethorpe saw nothing better than a scene 
of desolation, and his opponents complained that he would 
allow them neither riches, nor property, nor rum to gladden 
their hearts. They were no better than slaves themselves, 
according to their own account. 

"No doubt his government, which his enemies character- 
terized as a jumble of politics and power was despotic, as it 
had to be in the circumstances, as every beginning must be, 
and no doubt he maintained a discipline which was irksome 
to many But we may be sure that it was at that time not 
only important, but vitally necessary to the life of the col- 
ony, bounded as it was on the south by the territor}^ of a 
hostile power. If he had allowed the introduction of spirits, 
or if he had permitted the life of ease, which the possession 
of slaves would have entailed in the little community, the 
weakening of energy which would have resulted and the 
demoralization which might have ensued among the Indian 
tribes, on who he relied, might have been fatal to the future 
of the colony. 

"For Oglethorpe was no Puritan. Quite the contrary : his 
sympathies were with the Jacobites, and certainly the first 
feast which the weary travelers enjoyed when they landed 
on these shores savors but little of Puritanism. A chroni- 

To General James Edwatd Oglethorpe. 23 

cler has kindly handed down to posterity an account of the 
bill of fare. It consisted of four fat hogs, eight turkeys, be- 
sides English beef and fowls and other provisions. A hogs- 
head of punch, that is 63 gallons of that potent beverage; 
a hogshead of beer, besides large quantities of wine. And 
when the chronicler went on to notice what evidently struck 
him as the most remarkable thing about the banquet, as it 
certainly was : 'And all,' he says, 'was disposed in a man- 
ner so regular that no person was drunk.' 

"The whole of Oglethorpe's life contradicts the accusa- 
tions which his enemies hurled against him. On the con- 
trary, his was one of those minds filled with a great human 
love, which refuses to believe that nature has fixed a gulf 
between this class and that. A born gentleman, he had 
grasped the truth that the distinction which we, in our little 
circle, draw between the aristocrat and the peasant comes 
not of God but of man. More than this, he had grasped a 
still greater truth, that there is gold of full value in the des- 
titute and the outcast, that the terrible retribution that so- 
ciety visits on the unsuccessful is not always either neces- 
sary or just; that in the Fleet and the Marshalsea, those 
awful prisons of the debtor, there was hidden a human na- 
ture full of power to rise, full of the ability to create, want- 
ing only in the strength to burst the gyves which society, 
which professed but did not always practice Christianity, 
had firmly welded round their limbs. 

"You all of you remember the experiences of the immor- 
tal Pickwick in the Fleet, when rather than pay the dam- 
ages which had been unjustly awarded to Mrs. Bardell, he 
preferred to submit to the penalty of imprisonment. You 
remembered the cells he looked into, which he mistook for 
coal cellars, and the atmosphere of depravity and degrada- 
tion which pervaded the whole place. Yet in his day the 
debtors' prisons had already been improved, thanks to the 
efiforts of Oglethorpe and later of Howard, who must have 
been inspired by Oglethorpe's example in the great work of 
reform which he undertook. 

"Today, I am glad to say, we have come to a better 
knowledge of human nature. Slowly we are realizing that 
prison is not the cure for all social evils ; that, far from it, 
it is often nothing but the nostrum of the quack, which 
while doing no good to the patient's sickness, induces other 
disorders not less grave than that which it professes to heal. 

"In all great reform movements of the present day Ameri- 
ca is taking an honorable and a prominent part, whether it 

24 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

is for the reform of the prison system, the reform of cor- 
rupt municipalities, or the improvement in international re- 
lations. The United States has been especially to the fore 
in the promotion of the friendly settlement of disputes. 

"At no time in the history of our two countries have the 
relations been more cordial. There is not a cloud on the 
horizon. All the difficult boundary disputes have been set- 
tled. The complicated questions regarding the use of 
boundary waters have been regulated, and a joint commis- 
sion has been established for settling all questions which 
may arise in the application of the principles laid down and 
for advising on any other questions that may be referred to 
it. A quarrel a century old has just been swept away by 
arbitration. And this result is in no small measure due to 
the untiring efforts of Mr. Knox and his predecessor, Mr. 
Root, toward this goal. 

"Only a few days ago one of your prominent statesmen 
said to me that he could imagine no dispute between the 
United States and Great Britian which could not be settled 
by amicable negotiations or by arbitration, and that he con- 
sidered the future destinies of the two countries to be in- 
dissolubly bound up together 

"You may feel sure that those sentiments are heartily re- 
ciprocated on the other side of the water, and that, so far 
as human eftort can prevail or good will can reach, we shall 
do our share toward preserving and cementing a friendship 
which we regard as one of our most priceless treasures." 


After the address of Mr. Innes, the Hon. Walter G. Charl- 
ton of Savannah delivered the following oration : 

"Governor of Georgia, Ladies and Gentlemen, My Fellow 
Georgians : 
"Near two centuries ago a man of strong and noble na- 
ture sought here and there in London a missing friend, 
whose character and kindly qualities kept him in affection- 
ate remembrance. His search brought him at length to 
the debtors' prison of the Fleet, where in vilest surrround- 
ings, deliberately imprisoned in a narrow cell with victims 
of small-pox, he found the friend of his youth, dying of that 
loathsome disease. When he departed from that horrible 
scene, his life was consecrated to a great purpose. With 
the passing of the years there came a bright day in the 

Address of Hon. Walter G. Charlton. 





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( '^~ t' ■■JPICPft^HHBiff^^rO 


li i^^WI 




^^^Hi^MPC ^^^^^H 4* 




The Unveiling. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe 25 

long ago, when as the soft voices of spring were calling 
back to life and glory the sleeping beauties of nature, there 
landed upon what was destined to become a sovereign state 
a small band, selected to start upon its career the most re- 
markable experiment in the history of colonization. The 
purpose had reached its fulfillment, for the sorrowing friend 
was Oglethorpe ; the adventurers, the passengers of the 
Anne ; the land, the commonwealth which holds our alle- 
giance, our hopes, our happiness. 

"As they stood at that historic moment beneath the mar- 
velous blue of the February sky — free as the winds which 
sighed through the majestic pines which surrounded them — 
their memories aglow with the hospitality which had re- 
ceived and sheltered them as their voyage drew to its con- 
clusion on the neighboring shores of Carolina, no happier 
people ever faced the serious responsibilities of life. About 
them was grace and song and beauty ; before them, the pros- 
pect of rest and content ; within them, the peace of God. 
The tempestuous Atlantic, with its wintry wastes, had be- 
come a memory; and in the dim vistas of the past, the cruel 
bitterness of man's brutality was fading away as the phan- 
toms of the night before the warmth and splendor 
of the rising sun. They were not makers of history, these 
six score men and women from the debtors' prisons of Eng- 
land. They were the opportunity through which history 
is made. With all the limitations the condition suggests, 
they had been the victims of the most merciless system of 
laws which ever disgraced a civilized country — and were 
now free ; free to take up the broken journey of a life which, 
burdened as it had been with measureless suffering, had 
yet been untouched by the vice and dishonesty which sur- 
rounded it hour by hour. They were good men who had 
failed in the practical affairs of life, and from whom had de- 
parted the buoyancy of youth. They had marked time as 
ambition hurried by and was lost. And yet, when the last 
man stepped ashore on that historic day the echo of his 
footfall was to sound down the centuries ; the historian was 
to take up a new story in the annals of nations — for the 
great tide in hviman affairs had turned definitely to its up- 
ward flow. 

"There had been nothing like it in the history of mankind. 
They were of the weak and oppressed of earth. Few in 
number; untrained in military venture, unskilled in civic 
construction, their mision was to build for all time an em- 
pire in a v/ilderness and hold it against the warlike savage 

26 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

and the armies and navies of one of the greatest powers of 
Europe. Even as they set foot upon the shore, facing them 
were the hordes of Indians whom they were to resist, whilst 
to the south were gathering like unto the storm-clouds of 
the coming tempest the hosts of Spain. Yet from the tragic 
elements of failure came victory, for in the divine purposes 
of the Almighty it had been ordained at that moment there 
should stand upon the soil of Georgia the one man in all 
the world through whom victory might come. 

"A great artist, under the inspiration of a great subject, 
has brought to triumphant conclusion a work of art which, 
for all time, will hold the attention and interest of those 
whose vision rises above the sordid and groveling concerns 
of life and takes within its scope the things which charm 
and ennoble thought and action. To him who loves art 
for art's sake, the faithfulness of detail ; the grace of outline ; 
the strength of pose ; the historic perfection of the por- 
trayal will hold in fascination. What the Georgian will see 
and what he will carry in his memory from this historic spot 
will be the recollection of a strong, dominant warrior, with 
the fighting look upon his face — resolute and unconquerable 
— in the wisdom of Providence destined to stand on Georgia 
soil and in one momentous day end forever a conflict which 
had convulsed the civilization of Europe for centuries; and 
to see as he sheathed his victorious sword what would be 
in time the greatest monument it was ever given to man to 
rear — a free and sovereign State. 

"Human force and genius are so often contrasted with 
the grave crises which threaten to destroy the organized 
affairs of men, that when emergencies occur we instinctively 
search the perspective for the inevitable relief. The tension 
of the situation reacts upon the tendencies of given minds 
and won or lost no great cause ever swayed the hopes and 
emotions of mankind but from the stress and conflict sprang 
some heroic spirit to leave its shining record on the pages 
of history. Of the greatness of Oglethorpe is the fact that 
no crisis was at hand when he started upon the illustrious 
career, in recognition of which a grateful people this day 
do homage to his memory. In the times in which he began 
life the direction in which his steps led was along the beaten 
path of thousands. A military apprenticeship under gen- 
erals of renown ; a parliamentary career of more or less use- 
fulness ; a respectable and quiet old age amid the congenial 
surroundings of a privileged class — it was the common fate 
of those from whom he came 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 27 

"The imagination falters as it attempts to reconstruct the 
conditions upon which the contemporaries of Oglethorpe 
looked with the complacency which hourly contact indu- 
ces. In military prowess ; in terrific hardships upon land 
and sea; in shrewd and cunning diplomacy and politics, 
the age was supreme. For the simpler and nobler quali- 
ties from which are evolved the patriot and the brother, 
there was neither place nor recognition. The greatest sol- 
dier of the age did not hesitate to sell his country for gold ; 
the poet on bended knee served the fruitions of his soul to 
the taste of the dissolute in power; the statesman pandered 
to the vices of those who could repay in coin and place the 
eloquence which belonged to the race and not to the indi- 
vidual. Jeffries had not long since ridden upon his circuit, 
with a sneer upon his lips, sending to the gallows, amid the 
brutal clamor of the accompanying mob, women and chiki- 
ren for offenses which now receive the least of punishments. 
The poor were despised; the sick abandoned; the stricken 
in mind maltreated and exhibited for money. Deep down 
in all of this misery, friendless and hopeless, forgotten of 
friend and kindred, removed even from the exhausted mal- 
ice of foes, was the insolvent debtor whose only crime was 
his inability to deliver at the moment of demand the money 
he had promised to pay. 

"Appalling as was the condition which prevailed as the 
century drew to its close, the most frightful manifestation 
was the unprotested acceptance of it as endurably natural. 
Removed by the circumstances of birth from its more debas- 
ing aspects and influences was born on Dec. 22, 1696, James 
Edward Oglethorpe. Influence and opportunity brought 
him a commission, in his fifteenth year, under Marlborough, 
and after the peace of 1712 he served under Prince Eugene 
in the campaigns on the Danube There could have been 
no better martial schooling. But in this English boy was 
something beyond military enthusiasm. Working in his 
active brain was the constructive force which moulds states- 
men, and so directs and rules the destinies of nations. He 
mig'ht in the parliamentary career upon which he entered 
in 1722, have attained distinction, or, restive in the subser- 
vient crowd which dog the footsteps of the great, he might 
have gone prematurely to that life of quiet which in the dis- 
tance awaited his coming. It was otherwise ordained. The 
pen of a great novelist a century later aroused to indigtiant 
protest the English mind against the iniquities of imprison- 
ment for debt, and the echo of that far ofif revolution in 

28 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

public sentiment sounded at length in the constitution of 

"But on the day when Oglethorpe moved by the misfor- 
tune of a friend passed through the portals of the Fleet to 
find Robert Castell suffering amid the unspeakable brutali- 
ties of the debtors' prison the tortures of small-pox, there 
was no public conscience to be aroused to horror. When 
Hampden stormed with vivid bursts of eloquence in the 
British parliament, appealing to the eternal principles of 
liberty, though they brought down upon him the wrath of 
royalty, his words found lodgment in the souls and memo- 
ries of thousands, to grow and develop until in time all En- 
gland responded to the truths he had proclaimed. The sen- 
timent and the crisis were at hand. But upon this man 
was to fall not only the responsibility of meeting and over- 
coming a great evil by the force of his individuality, but of 
creating the opportunity without which his enthusiasm and 
devotion must fade and perish for want of that upon which 
it must take root to live. 

"The England of 1729 took no heed of what fate might 
befall the insolvent debtor. Misfortune and misery excit- 
ed its mirth ; and compassion like some feeble growth slight- 
rooted in arid soil, sent its weak and nerveless tendrils here 
and there in fitful and uncertain ways toward what might 
prove support. The man and the evil stood face to face, 
and singly and alone, as in the tales where moved the 
knights-errant of the age of poesy, he gave fight until the 
sheer gallantry of the spectacle began to make a responsive 
thrill, and gather to him, one by one, the kindred spirits 
which, few in number, but worthy of the cause in which 
they fought, stood with him until the glorious end became 
a conclusion never to be undone in the history of man. His 
chivalrous heart, full of indignant pity for the sorrows upon 
vvhich he looked, Oglethorpe introduced into parliament 
a resolution of inquiry into the conditions of the debtors' 
prisons. The investigation which followed revealed, in the 
language of an historian of that epoch, 'infamous jobbery 
and more infamous cruelty on the part of prison officials.' 
With the report came the opportunity without which the 
greatness of individuals means nothing. 

"They fail to grasp the greatness of this man's nature who 
see in his efforts only the workings of emotional benevo- 
lence — the distempered energy which forces its conceptions 
of altruism upon the poor with no thought for the poor 
man's dignity of thought and independence of spirit. What 

Battalion Benedictine Cadets. 

1st Regiment Band. 

To General James Edivard Oglethorpe, 29 

moved him to action was a divine wrath against injustice — 
the scorn of an exalted mind for the besotted barbarities of 
a practice which found no warrant in the laws of God or 
the promptings of common humanity. It was characteris- 
tic of the situation that when the charter of Georgia came 
to be signed the names written into it were few — few and 
known and honored. Written at a time when the great civ- 
ic and private virtues which illustrate every condition of 
our day were in a state of dormancy, its language places 
it among the priceless documents of the ages. Without 
profit or reward or hope of material benefit to any incorpo- 
rator, it was recited that his majesty, having taken into con- 
sideration the miserable circumstances of many of his own 
poor subjects, ready to perish for want, as likewise the dis- 
tress of many poor foreigners who would take refuge here 
from persecution, hath, out of his fatherly compassion to- 
ward his subjects, been graciously pleased to grant a char- 
ter for incorporating a number of gentlemen by the name 
of 'The Trustees for establishing a colony of Georgia in 

"We are accustomed to the spectacle of public altruism, 
where the plethoric dispenser of charity pursues his com- 
placent wa}^ with a stafif of newspaper reporters at his heels, 
and followed by the gaping multitude from whom he has 
drawn his wealth ; and with cheque book in one hand and 
chisel in the other erects an edifice with the one and with 
the other carves his ignoble name that we may not forget 
the incident. But here was a soul crying aloud, like John 
in the wilderness, with no thought of self, that the helpless 
might be lifted from the depths of despair and the stricken 
in spirit take hope for the renewed conflicts of a life which 
had come to be with them a vague and insubstantial mem- 
ory. Whatever his eloquence or want of eloquence, from 
the material of the impossible this one man evolved the pos- 
sible and the fact; and when the slow processes of legis- 
lative inquiry began to quiver into movement, and piece by 
piece to form in the minds of the few the result which took 
form in the charter of Georgia, the refuge for the friendless 
and the oppressed, the first practical step in the direction 
of moral reform in social conditions had been taken ; and 
although the labor and eloquence of an hundred years were 
to be expended before the revolution in public sentiment 
became assured and the Samaritan began once more to 
travel along the highways of life, the fact remains that 
among human agencies to the founder of Georgia is to be 

JO A History of the Erection and' Dedication of the Monument 

ascribed the first practical step in the direction of that com- 
prehensive altruism which in our day works to its blessed 
ends with no hope of reward and no thought of personal 

"It was not to be conceived that any man, be his persua- 
siveness what it might, could impress on King or parlia- 
ment or subject the practicability or desirability of estab- 
lishing in a distant wilderness beyond the seas a colony for 
the friendless and the oppressed, without more. The 
shrewdness of Oglethorpe's mind foresaw that without 
some practical importance to be given the movement he 
had in contemplation, something which would appeal to a 
general sentiment already existing, rather than to one which 
should exist, but did not, the work he had in view would 
never progress beyond his hopes. Whatever might be the 
social degradation to which England had descended, with 
the consequent indifference to the inevitable results which 
followed upon such a deplorable condition, in one direction 
the public sentiment was sound. An appeal which was 
founded upon the necessity or advisability of extending the 
military power had prompt and effective response from no- 
ble and peasant. Marlborough might traffic with the Court 
of France, but Marlborough was none the less the great 
general who had carried the flag of England in triumph 
through the ranks of continental powers ; whilst wherever 
the ocean beat, over its stormy waves floated in defiant free- 
dom the historic banner which our ancestors loved. 

"Colonies for the exercise of benevolence were unknown 
to the statesmanship of that or any other age ; but colonies 
for military purposes were as old as civilization itself. The 
presentation was attractive ; the utility demonstrable. 
Across the stretches of a vast ocean was a colony favored 
of the crown and established in the sentiments of the people. 
To the south and west were tribes of savages of unknown 
numbers, ready and eager to descend upon its resources, 
whilst in the offing were gathered the navies of the heredi- 
tary foe of England, with which at intervals it had waged 
desperate warfare extending over centuries of time. So to 
the project of the benevolent colony was added the alluring 
prospect of a colony which was to interpose its effective 
presence between Carolina on the one hand and the Span- 
iard and Indian on the other. Men might scoff at the op- 
portunity to be furnished the insolvent debtor to redeem his 
fortunes, but it would not occur to the practical minded 
Briton to view with indifference a determined body of ag- 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. j/ 

gressive E^nglishmen to be drawn from the fighting stock 
of the old country and landed upon a distant shore charged 
with the duty of fighting, and fighting in what to all was 
not only a good cause, but a cause which had in it the ele- 
ment of temper as well as right. 

"And so what was apparently the secondary purpose of 
the settlement of Georgia became by force of circumstances 
inherent in the original project the real purpose — and the 
charter in ringing terms made this the only military colony 
in America. In considering the character and success of 
Oglethorpe both purposes are to be borne in mind. That 
his object was really to lift from the deplorable condition 
in which he was the insolvent debtor, there can be no doubt; 
that he accepted not only in good faith but with the enthusi- 
asm of one in whom the spirit of chivalry was developed to 
its highest excellence, the additional charge to carry to suc- 
cess the English arms, is equally certain. No one of his 
unusual perspicacity could fail to know that a colony of in- 
solvent debtors just from the loathsome prisons of England, 
however honest they might be, would be worse than useless 
as a military establishment. It meant in all probability just 
so many more people to protect. A man who was simply 
wise without being great and humane would upon the grant- 
ing of the charter with its two objects, have ignored the 
one and fixed his hopes upon the other. 

"If he had followed the paths of his predecessors in colo- 
nial experimentation that would have been his determina- 
tion. If he had in view personal aggrandizement, personal 
greed, personal privilege, the military feature assured the 
friendless prisoners would have been relegated to despair. It 
is to be remembered of this man so long as history shall carry 
the deeds and greatness of mortals to a discriminating pos- 
terity, that in all the years of the administration of the af- 
fairs of the colony of Georgia, from the moment when the 
project took shape in his mind and heart to the moment 
when, his work accomplished, he saw the lines of 
her coast recede from his vision ; through the resulting years 
of honor and dignity, unto the moment when he passed into 
the peace of eternity, the founder of Georgia never owned 
a foot of Georgia soil ; enjoyed no privilege in her vast do- 
main save such as was necessary to the effective discharge 
of his public trust ; and so far from taking to his profit one 
cent devoted to her development or the purposes of her set- 
tlement, left the service of Georgia and of the crown of En- 

S2 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

gland with fortune impaired and never restored by the gov- 
ernment which had profited by his work. 

"You will search in vain through the stories of American 
colonization, my fellow Georgians, for the instance which 
suggests remotely the disinterestedness of him in whose hon- 
or we are here today. Integrity and disinterestedness in 
public life as the illustrated Oglethorpe, so made they our 
people great in the days which followed. Guard with con- 
stant watchfulness this priceless heritage, for on that day 
when we become indifferent to the influence of these virtues ; 
that moment when we view with complacency the give and 
take of modern politics, so sure as the rising of the sun will 
be the passing of the republic which Southern thought and 
sacrifice made possible and Southern tradition and devotion 
keep secure in the deadly storms which are now shaking it 
to its foundations. 

"The occasion is concerned with the individual rather than 
the incidents which one by one formed his life work into a 
great historical event, not without its epic setting. Consider 
for a moment a broad and chivalric nature, trained in the 
school of military service under the great captains of Europe, 
at the head of a colony of 120 men and women, broken in for- 
tune and in spirit, bound for a wild country across the tem- 
pestuous seas, extending the written words of the char- 
ter from the waters of the Savannah to the South seas — a 
land inhabited by savages of warlike disposition and habit, 
and menaced by the naval and military power of the ancient 
and truculent foe of England. Yet when on November 30, 
1732, the good ship Anne set sail from Gravesend and turned 
her prow to the setting sun, at that moment began a distinct 
epoch not only in the military history of England, but in the 
moral development of mankind. 

"Upon that momentous voyage and its conclusion at the 
hospitable shores of Carolina it is not permissible to dwell 
at length. Leaving the colonists in the generous care of the 
noble people of that great colony, Oglethorpe pursued his 
way to Georgia and in a brief interview with Tomochichi set- 
tled for all time the relations between the colony and the In- 
dians There is no such colonial record anywhere in Ameri- 
ca. Without this victory of peace the colony could not have 
progressed, if it could have started upon its way, and it 
would reflect upon a generous people to forego a passing 
tribute to that great Georgian of the long ago whose broad- 
ness of mind and faithfulness of character made possible the 
solution of this problem which confronted the colonists at 

Battalion 1st Regiment. 

2d Battalion 1st Infantry. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 33 

the threshold of their undertaking. It has been said that 
'not a day passes over the earth but men and women of no 
note do great deeds, speak great words and suffer noble 
sorrows. Of these obscure heroes, philosophers and mar- 
tyrs, the greater part will never be known till that hour when 
many that are great shall be small and the small great; but 
of others the world's knowledge may be said to sleep; their 
lives and characters lie hidden from nations in the annals 
that record them.' 

"Of these last was Tomochichi, who, when upward of 
ninety years of age, was fighting the enemies of Georgia. In 
a neighboring square, a few hundred feet from this spot, 
where he was laid to rest by the people of Georgia, a noble 
band of Georgia women, carrying out the forgotten behest 
of Oglethorpe made in the long ago, have placed as a me- 
morial where he was buried a boulder of Georgia granite. 
On it is inscribed that he was the Mico of the Yamacraws; 
the companion of Oglethorpe, and the friend and ally of 
the colony of Georgia. As they were associated in life, so 
let them live together in our grateful memories, and let this 
spot on which stands the monument to the one discard 
a designation which is meaningless and take on the name 
of the old warrior whose friendship made possible the 
peaceful settlement of the colony of Georgia. 

"From the petty details and annoyances of colonial in- 
auguration, infinitely more trying to one of Oglethorpe's 
character than the stern hardships and dangers of cam- 
paigning, the project in what began to be its more critical 
phase engrossed the thought and anxiety of the leader. 
The Indian had been converted into a friend but the war- 
clouds were still gathering to the south. To attempt to stay 
that storm by the exhibition of one hundred and twenty in- 
solvent debtors would have recalled, amid the derisive laugh- 
ter of the gods, Xerxes stilling the sounding waves with the 
uplifting of his hands. But the call to battle which rung in 
the words of the Georgia Charter had not been unheeded. 
The first adventurers who sailed in the Anne came from 
the debtors' prison, but the colonists who followed during 
the next three years were of as free and sturdy a stock as 
ever ventured forth to extend the prestige and power of 
England. These freemen from England and Scotland, 
with the brave-hearted Salsburgers, were the substantial 
colonists of Georgia, and from their arrival here the move- 
ment took on new life. 

J4 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

"It was a colony as notable for what it did not do as for 
that which was undertaken and accomplished. It was of 
the fortune of mankind that at the critical moments the 
guiding power was in the man who had made the experi- 
ment possible. An apparently impossible undertaking 
which must have appealed to the age in which it was es- 
sayed as a comic manifestation, took on a practical busi- 
ness aspect within a few hours of the landing. The In- 
dians became friends ; toleration prevailed ; civic and mili- 
tary progression went on side by side ; even the dreaded 
witch in free Georgia had more rights than the minister of 
•God who in higher latitudes wandered from colony to colony 
seeking in vain the rest which his vocation suggested and his 
character demanded and after centuries of persecution here 
at last the learned and patient Jew found peace. To the 
practical mind of Oglethorpe no detail was negligible. As 
there were no mercenary aims in the venture itself or its 
development, the grinding processes which were applied 
elsewhere found no toleration here. It was not only a 
practical mind which governed, but the mind of a construc- 
tive statesman, trained in the hard school of military neces- 

"Oglethorpe not only dealt successfully with the petty 
details of colonial life, but with singular clearness his vis- 
ion took within its scope the things which were to come. 
He forbade slavery and prohibited rum, industries which 
found lodgement only after his departure. The very plan 
upon which Savannah progresses was formulated by him. 
The instructed Georgian cannot look in any direction here 
without being reminded of the great man who was responsi- 
ble for the existence of Georgia. The fate of the colony 
was in the keeping of this one man. Had he faltered ; had 
his resources of mind and soul even so much as checked 
their out-pour at any given time, the experiment had fail- 
ed. He had already accomplished a great work. The col- 
ony of Georgia had been fixed on safe lines, and altruism 
had been rewritten upon the souls of men. A great man 
and a great work had come together, and the vitality of a 
great nature had been breathed into the work. 

"But the colonization of Georgia even upon such lofty 
ideals was the accomplishment of only a part of that which 
Oglethorpe had in mind. As you face his statue, with the 
naked sword in hand and its defiant and fighting look to- 
ward the south, another Oglethorpe confronts you. The 
statesman has stripped away his robes, and the lieutenant 

To General James Edward Ogleikorpc. ^5 

of Marlborough and Eugene, with the problem of centuries 
before him, awaits the moment when along the narrow 
edge of the gleaming blade in his hand shall flash the sig- 
nal of battle, and the old quarrel between England and 
Spain find its solution. 

"From the settlement on February 12, 1733, the colony 
had progressed without special incident for a year. In 
the summer of that- year Oglethorpe had returned to Eng- 
land, accompanied by Tomochichi ; and on March 10, 1734, 
the Purisburg, with the Salsburgers, arrived — the High- 
landers sailed on the Prince of Wales, Oct. 20, 1735. The 
London Merchant and the Symond left England with the 
Frederica colonists on Dec. 21, 1735. Having returned 
to the colony toward the close of 1736, Oglethorpe again 
sailed for England to urge the departure of the military 
contingent. A portion of the troops sailed on May 7, 1738, 
and the remainder, with Oglethorpe as general, arrived off 
Jekyl bar on Sept. 18, 1738. 

"During the intervals, Oglethorpe, with the assistance 
of Tomochichi, made frequent demonstrations along 
the Spanish frontier. Hostilities began on November 
15, 1739, with the slaying of two Highlanders by the 
Spaniards, on Amelia Island. Oglethorpe at once gave 
pursuit, pushing on to the St. John's river, and burning 
three outposts. Marching in the direction of St. Augus- 
tine he attacked and defeated a detachment of the enemy, 
and attempted unsuccessfully to take Forts St. Francis 
and Picolata. Returning on Jan 1, 1740, he burnt the latter 
and reduced the former. It never occurred to Oglethorpe 
to stay whipped. Driven off today, he was back on the 
morrow — a practice which the Spanish governor took 
much to heart as unreasonable, with a touch of discourtesy 
to a successful antagonist. 

"In May, 1740, with an army two thousand strong, con- 
sisting of regulars, militia and Indians, with co-operative 
fleet under Admiral Vernon, he moved on to St. Augustine; 
captured Fort Moosa, and signaling the lleet to action, pre- 
pared to deliver the assault on the fortifications of the Florida 
strongliold. The fleet failed to respond and departed, and 
the unsupported attack from the land becoming thus im- 
practicable, a siege of three weeks followed, which Ogle- 
thorpe was finally compelled to abandon. To his repeated 
and urgent requests for reinforcements the home go\ern- 
nient made no response, and he had been practically aban- 
<!oned to his fate when, in the summer of 1741, the long 

S6 A Histoty of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

gathering storm burst in all its fury A Spanish fleet of 
fifty-one sails had appeared in June of that year. Its ves- 
sels, in one way and another, were so badly used by Ogle- 
thorpe in detail that it finally disappeared, to be replaced 
on June 28 by the St. Augustine fleet of thirty-eight sails, 
Oglethorpe retarded its movements until July 5, when, after 
a hot engagement, lasting four hours, it passed the batter- 
ies and got out of range toward Frederica, upon which place 
Oglethorpe fell back — the enemy landing on the south end 
of St. Simon's. On July 7, 1742, the Spaniards moved on 
Frederica and Oglethorpe advanced to meet them, and the 
decisive battle of Bloody Marsh was on. When the smoke 
cleared away Georgia was free. The battle had not been to 
the strong. The comment of Oglethorpe was as charac- 
istic as it was modest. 'The Spanish invasion which had a 
long time threatened the colony, Carolina and all North 
America, has at last fallen upon us, and God hath been our 
deliverance.' And George Whitfield said of it, 'the deliver- 
ance of Georgia from the Spaniards is such as cannot be par- 
alleled but by some instances out of the Old Testament.' 

"His work accomplished; his mission fulfilled, on July 
23, 1743, he sailed for England, never to see again the land 
to which he had devoted the best years of his life. He was 
too great to escape the calumnies of the small and the in- 
gratitude of the narrow. Having passed to payment the 
expenditures made by him out of his personal fortune, the 
English government revoked its action and appropriated 
his money. Having availed themselves of his military tal- 
ents, the advisers of royalty court-martialed him on grounds 
which were dismissed as slanderous. Finally, he withdrew 
from the service of an ungrateful monarch and entered upon 
the last stage of the journey of life which was to end on July 
1, 1785- King and courtier might see in him only a success- 
ful rival for the fame which it was not given them to attain, 
but with the great spirit of his time he became a welcome 
guest. Authors laid their tributes at his feet and poets 
bound about his brows the laurel wreaths of victory. Geor- 
gia and her fate never passed from his thought. Tradition 
has it that in the days of the Revolution he was tendered 
the command of the English forces, and refused to take up 
arms against the colony he had founded. Whether it be 
true or no, never in thought or word that history records 
was he ever disloyal to the colony to which he had devoted 
the best vcars of his life. 

IZth U. S. Infantry. 

A Battalion of 2d Infantry. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. $j 

"He had striven with success for the betterment of the 
weak and helpless in an age of abject selfishness. He had 
made an empire with a handful of the oppressed of earth, 
, and the work had survived. He had overcome the Indian 
I by persuasion and kindness and won the abiding friendship 
I of the savages he had been sent to slay. He had encounter- 
' ed the most powerful foe of England and driven him in dis- 
astrous defeat before his scant battle-line. Reversing all 
: the traditions of colonial administration, he had been toler- 
ant and just. He was a builder and not an iconoclast; a 
statesman and not a schemer; a soldier and not a plunderer. 
"Brave and wise and merciful, the ends he accomplished 
placed him in historic perspective a century ahead of the 
day in which he worked. Honest in an era of guile, without 
I fear and without reproach, he comes to us with his unstained 
record, to live so long as Georgians shall stand upon the 
ancient ways and see and approve the better things of life. 
In all his brilliant career — in the hour of stress, in the mo- 
ment of victory — no clamorous sound of vain and self-ap- 
plauding words came from his lips There was no need. 
That which he did sends its paeans down the centuries ; and 
over his illustrious career Georgia stands guard forever" 


At the conclusion of Judge Charlton's address Mr. J. Ran- 
dolph Anderson, the Chairman of the Commission, and Mr. 
Daniel Chester French, the sculptor, escorted to the base of 
the monument His Excellency, Joseph M. Brown, Governor 
of Georgia, and Mrs. J. J. Wilder, president of the Society 
of Colonial Dames of America, and placing into their hands 
the cords that held the two flags together, gave the signal 
for the unveiling, and in a moment the heroic figure of Ogle- 
thorpe stood revealed in the midst of the applauding multi- 


The statue itself is of bronze nine feet in height facing 
t south, and represents Oglethorpe in the full dress of a Brit- 
ish general of the period of 1730. It rests upon a pedestal of 
I pink-gray marble in Italian renaissance design. This die 
1 rests upon a wide platform ornamented with garlands and 
' tabled on the sides, with a lion rampant on each corner, car- 
rying a shield. Upon the shields are carved the seals of 

j<f A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

the colony of Georgia, the state of Georgia, the city of Sav- 
annah, and the coat-of-arms of Oglethorpe. On the east and 
west sides of the monument is a marble seat, and on the 
north and south ends of the quadrangle is an exhedra in 
limestone inclosing a grass plot. 

On the south face of the pedestal is carved in colonial 
style the following inscription : 

Erected by 
The State of Georgia 
The City of Savannah, 

And the Patriotic 
Societies of the State 
To the Memory of 
The Great Soldier 
Eminent Statesman, and 
Famous Philanthropist, 
General James Edward Oglethorpe who in 
This City on the 12th 
Day of February 
A. D- 1733 Founded and 
Established the 
Colony of Georgia. 

At the conclusion of the unveiling and dedicatory exer- 
cises at the monument the several military companies which 
had been grouped in the square moved off in order to the 
strains of martial music to the Park Extension, where a 
parade and grand review of the troops were made in the 
presence of the distinguished guests and in view of thous- 
ands of citizens who surrounded the Park on all sides. 

The program as planned was fully carried out, and 
the occasion was made one worthy of the memory of Geor- 
gia's heroic founder. 


Daniel Chester French, the sculptor whose genius and 
artistic skill created the bronze statue of Oglethorpe, was 
born in Exeter, New Hampshire, April 20, 1850. His pa- 
rents were substantial New Englanders, and were connect- 
ed with the families of Daniel Webster and John Greenleaf 
Whittier. He received his education at Exeter, N. H., the 


To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 39 

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Dartmouth 
College. He studied sculpture in Boston and in Florence, 
Italy, and in 1876-78 he had a studio in Washington. From 
1878 to 1887 he was located in Boston and Concord, Mass. 
and since that time he has had his studio in New York. 
Mr. French is recognized as one of the foremost sculptors 
of America. Among his best known works are ''The Min- 
ute Man of Concord," a statue of General Cass in the Capi- 
tol at Washington, a statue of Rufus Choate in Boston, 
John Harvard at Cambridge, Mass., Thomas Starr King 
in San Francisco, the colossal "Statue of the Republic" at 
the World's Columbian Exposition, "Dr. Gallaudet and his 
Deaf Mute Pupil," at Washington, the Milmore Memo- 
rial (3d class medal at Paris Salon, 1892), bronze doors to 
Boston Public Library, Statue of Alma Mater at Columbia 
College, groups Europe, Asia, Africa, and America in front 
of the New York Custom House, Statue of Samuel Spencer 
in Atlanta, etc. 

In 1900 he was awarded a medal of honor at the Paris 
Exposition, and in 1902 he became a member of the Nat- 
ional Academy. He is one of the trustees of the Metro- 
politan Museum of Art in New York, and a member of the 
National Sculpture Society, the Architectural League, and 
Academia di S. Luca, Rome, Italy. 

In 1888 Mr. French married Miss Mary Adams French 
of Washington, and at present lives at 125 West 11th 
street, New York City. 

The statue to Oglethorpe is his last work, and in its spir- 
ited conception and artistic execution it is worthy alike of 
the distinguished sculptor and of Georgia's heroic founder. 

40 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 


Oglethorpe Monument Commission. 


(1) Appropriation by State of Georgia $15,000.00 

(2) " " City of Savannah* 12,000.00 

(3) Funds raise i by Oglethorpe Monument Ass'n : 

From Georgia Society of Colonial Dames of 

America % 58984 

From Daughters of American Revolution 1,176.26 

" Georgia Society Sons of the Revolution 503.75 

Proceeds of Hall given Dec. loth, 1903 779-75 

Contributed by Oglethorpe Club 500.00 

" " W. J. DeRenne, Esq 500.00 

Sundry Contributions 75-43 

Interest on deposits to Nov. 19th, 1910 1,062.37 

Less sundry disbursements 40.47 

Total turned over to the Oglethorpe Monu- 
ment Commission 5»i46-93 

(4) Funds raised by Georgia Society Colonial Dames 


Contributed by S. P. Shotter, Esq 1,000.00 

" " Jasper Monument Asso'n 772.10 

Other amounts raised or appropriated, in- 
cluding interest on deposits to Dec. s, 1910 1,701 58 3,473.68 

(5 ) Contributions made direct to Oglethorpe Mon- 

ument Commission: 

Georgia Historical Society 500.00 

Joseph Hull, Esq 500.00 

J. Florance Minis, Esq 100.00 

Mrs. L. F. Minis 100.00 

J. Randolph Anderson, Esq 100.00 1,300.00 

(6) Interest on deposits 801.74 

Total receipts by Commission 137,722.35 

Paid for removing busts of Bartow and McLaws 

from Chippewa Square to Park Extention | 278.00 

Paid for planting trees, and sundry incidentals 88.38 

P«ud for account monument and surroundings 37,355-97 

$37,722.35 $37,722.35 

•The total appropriation made by the City of Savannah was $15,000 of which, 
under the terms nf the resolution of Council, the sum of $12,000 was to be applied 
on the cost of the monument and $3j^oo was to be applied towards the expenses at- 
tending the unveiling ceremonies. The moneys received from the city were applied 
and used accordingly. 


Chairman Oglethorpe Monument Commission 

17th U. S. Infantry. 

Battalion 5th Infantry, Ga. State Troops. 


To General James Edwatd Oglethorpe. 41 


It is a well known fact that there has existed for many 
years much uncertainty concerning the full and correct 
name of Oglethorpe, and the exact date of his birth. The 
biographers of this distinguished man differ greatly upon 
both these points. Jones and Harris give June 1, 1689, 
Tlie Britannica (ninth edition) and the Dictionary of Nat- 
ional Biography give December 22, 1696, and McCall places 
the date at December 21, 1698. In all the letters and writ- 
ten documents of Oglethorpe extant he signed his name 
simply James Oglethorpe, though some of his biographers 
give it as James Edward Oglethorpe. 

In the Biographical Memorials of Oglethorpe by Harris, 
pages 325 and following, the matter of his birth is discuss- 
ed at some length, and in the Magazine of American His- 
tory of 1883, Vol. VIII, part II, page 108, there occurs an 
interesting article on the subject by W. S. Bogart of Sav- 
annah. These discussions are based upon certain records 
copied from the Register of Births and Baptisms in the 
Church of St. James, Westminster, England, and from the 
Register of Corpus Christi College, Oxford. The record 
from the Register Book of Births and Baptisms belonging 
to the Parish of St. James, Westminster, is given by Harris 
as follows : 

Bapt. I June 1689. 

2 1 James Oglethorpe of Sir Theophilus and 
I his lady Elinor, b. 1. 

The interpretation of this is that James Oglethorpe, son 
of Sir Theophilus and his lady Elinor, was born June 1, 
1689, and baptised June 2. 

The record of the entry of James Oglethorpe into Corpus 
Christi College, Oxford, is thus given by Harris : 

"1704, Jul. 9, term. S. Trin. Jacobus Oglethorpe, e C. C. 
C. 16. Theoph. f. Sti. Jacobi. Lond. Equ. Aur. filius natu 

That is, In Trinity Term, July 9, 1704, James Oglethorpe, 
aged 16, youngest son of Sir Theophilus Oglethorpe, of St. 
James's, London, was admitted into Corpus Christi Col- 

These statements do not harmonize with each other, or 
with several facts in the later history of Oglethorpe, and 

^ A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument . 

the matter of his name and the exact date of his birth have 
remained for many years in much doubt. 

When the monument to the memory of this distinguished 
man was erected in Savannah in 1910, the question was 
again brought up and earnestly discussed- In order to 
determine it fully and with accuracy if possible, two inde- 
pendent investigations were made, — one by W. J. DeRenne, 
Esq., for the Monument Commission, and the other by Otis 
Ashmore in behalf of the Georgia Historical Society. The 
results of both these investigations agree, and the matter 
so long in doubt is now definitely and authentically cleared 
up and established, and the evidences given herewith. The 
following photographic copy of a certificate obtained bj 
Mr. DeRenne from St. Martin-in-the-Fields is self-explana- 


Fol. /2. c?' 



I /^^ee^^t.oi^^ /(o^(o . 



^"^U^.^^ Ay ^-C- 

'^^o ■ JZ'X-^ 

The above is a true exthact from the Registek Book of BAPTisMS 
belonging to this Church. 

Witness my hand, this / a^ 

44 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

From this it is clear that Oglethorpe's name was James 
Edward, and that he was born December 22, 1696. 

Without knowing of Mr. DeRenne's efforts, Otis Ash- 
more, Corresponding Secretary of the Georgia Historical- 
Society, took the matter up with the Lord Bishop of Lon- 
don with a view of obtaining a correct copy of the record 
of the births and baptisms of all the children of Sir Theophi- 
lus Oglethorpe, and with the Dean of Corpus Christi Col- 
lege, Oxford, to verify the date of Oglethorpe's entrance 
into that institution. This correspondence follows : 

Savannah, Ga , Dec. 8, 1910. 
To His Lordship, 

The Bishop of London, 

London, England. 
Dear Sir: 

The state of Georgia, U. S. A., has just erected at Savan- 
nah a monument to the memory of General James Edward 
Oglethorpe, the founder of this colony in 1733, and the date 
of his birth has become a matter of inquiry with us. There 
seems to be much uncertainty concerning the exact date, 
and it is for the purpose of ascertaining it definitely that I 
am writing you to assist us. You can probably refer this 
letter to some one in official position to give us this infor- 
mation, and by so doing you will confer a great favor upon 
our Society. 

The biographical sketches of Oglethorpe give various 
dates of his birth. Some give June 1, 1689 ; some give Dec- 
ember 21, 1688 ; some December 22, 1688 ; and others give 
December 22, 1696. The following extract from the Dic- 
tionary of National Biography is our latest authority on 
the matter of his birth. 

"OGLETHORPE, JAMES EDWARD (1696-1785), gen- 
eral, philanthropist, and colonist of Georgia, born in Lon- 
don on December 22, 1696, was baptised next da}"" at St. 
Martin's in the Fields. An elder brother, also named 
James, born on 1 June, 1689, died in infancy (Notes and 
Queries, 3d Sec. XH, 68). He matriculated at Corpus 
Christi College, Oxford, on 8 July, 1714, but had already 
obtained a commission in the British army in 1710." 

These statements, however, do not all harmonize with, 
some other facts of his subsequent life, and I would like to 
secure an exact copy of the record of his baptism at St. Mar- 
tin's in the Field. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 45 

This record is said to read as follows : 

Bap. I June, 1689 

2 j James Oglethorpe of Sir Theophilus and 
I his lady Elinor, b. 1. 

We would be glad to have this record verified and inter- 
preted by those familiar with these records. Does it mean 
that James Oglethorpe was baptised on June 2, 1689, and 
that he was born on June 1, 1689? 

It is claimed that record refers to an elder brother al- 
so named James who died in infancy. If so the baptismal 
record of James Edward will probably be found under the 
date December 22, 1696. Our Oglethorpe always signed his 
name simply James, though there is good reason to believe 
that his middle name was Edward. Can you throw any 
light upon this point? What authority is there for the state- 
ment that he was born in London rather than at Westbrook 
at Godalming, Surrey? 

From Nichols's Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth 
Century, Vol. II, p. 16, we are told that Sir Theophilus Ogle- 
thorpe had the following children : 

I.— Lewis, born 1680-81. (Feb) 

II.— Theophilus, born 1682. 
III. — Eleanora, born 1684. 
IV. — Anne 

v.— Sutton, born 1686. 
VI. — Henrietta 

VII. — James, born June 1, 1869. 
VIII. — Frances-Charlotte. 
XL— Mary 

Is it practical to obtain from the church records the date of 
birth, or at least the date of baptism, of these children? 

At what age was it customary at that time to baptise 
children? Was James, referred to in this record, baptised 
when he was only one day old? 

The Georgia Historical Society will be greatly obliged to 
you if you will give such direction to this letter as to secure 
for us the offtcial and reliable information which we seek. 

Very respectfully, 


Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist Soc. 

46 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

Savannah, Ga., U. S. A. 
Jan. 10, 1911, 

St. Martin's Vicarage, 
Charing Cross, W. C. 
Dear Sir : 

In re James Edward Oglethorpe. 
I received a few weeks ago your letter to the Lord Bishop 
of London, asking for information in detail about this family. 
My parish clerk has examined our registers with great care, 
and I send you the results of his search. You will see that 
he has examined the books at St. James, Piccadilly, as well 
as St. Martin-in-the-Fields- These are the results which I 
have now the pleasure of forwarding you. He can find 
nothing more. 

May I be allowed to say that as he is a poor man and has 
taken great trouble over the matter, you may be disposed to 
make some acknowledgement to him in the form of a fee, 
but we make no charage. 
I am 

Yours faithfully, 


Vicar of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. 
St. Martin-in-the-Fields Parish Church. 

Charing Cross, Jany. 6, 1911. 

Dear Sir : 


Your letter of December 8th last to the Lord Bishop of 
London has been handed to me for attention, and in reply 
thereto I beg to give you the result of my search through 
our registers, which have extended some years after 1700 an 
and before 1681. 

JAMES EDWARD was undoubtedly baptised here on 
December 23, 1696, having been born on the 22nd presuma- 
bly in London ; as in those days it would scarcely be possible 
and highly improbable to bring a child from Godalming to 
be christened at Charing Cross the day after its birth. 

Your second query is as to JAMES. He was born 1st 
June, 1689 and was baptised on the 2nd of that month at 
St. James's Church. Piccadilly, a parish adjoining this, but 
he died in infancy ; being buried at St. lames's on the 15th 
June, 1690. 

The reply to your next inquiry, "the age at which it was 
customary to baptise children at that time", is, within a few 

To Genet al James Edward Oglethorpe. 47 

days of birth. Appended is a list of those I have been able 
to find, and I would suggest that those I have not been able 
to find may have been born and christened at Godalming. 
in Surrey, as your letter infers they lived there. 

MARY I cannot trace, but I do find CHARLES and AN 
HARATH, which you do not give in your list. 

Born 21st, Baptised 23rd February, 1681. 

LEWIS OGLETHORP of Theophilus & Elin. 

Baptised 20th February, 1682 (Date of birth not given.) 

AN HARATH OGLETHORP of Theophilus & Elinor. 

Born 9th, Baptised 11th March, 1684. 

THEOPHILUS OGLETHORPE of Theophilus & Elli- 

Baptised 22nd May, 1686. (Date of birth not given) 

CHARLES OGLETHORP of Sr. Theophylus & Lady 

This at St. James's Church, Piccadilly. 

Born 1st, Baptised 2nd June, 1689. 

JAMES OGLETHORP of Sr. Theophilus and his Lady 

This at St. James's Church, Piccadilly, 

Buried at St. James's, Picadilly, 15th June, 1690. 

JAMES OGLETHORP. C. (This means child) 

Born 7th, Baptised 7th September, 1692. 

philus & Eleanora. 

Born 22nd, Baptised 23rd December, 1696. 

& Eleanora. (Coll. means Colonel.) 

Should you desire stamped certificated copies of these 
entries I can send them upon hearing from you, and I may 
say in conclusion the parents of these children were not mar- 
ried in this church. 

Savannah, Ga., Dec. 8, 1910 

To the Dean of Corpus Christi College, 
University of Oxford, 

Oxford, England. 
Dear Sir: 

The state of Georgia, U. S. A., has just erected at Sav- 
annah a monument to the memory of General James Ed- 
ward Oglethorpe, the founder of this colony in 1733, and the 
date of his birth has become a matter of inquirv with us. 

48 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

There seems to be much uncertainty concerning the exact 
date, and the date of his admission into Corpus Christi Col- 
lege will aid us in determining the question. From one of 
his biographies the following copy of the University Register 
is taken. 

"1704, Jul. 9, term. S. Trin. Jacobus Oglethorpe, e C. C. C. 
16. Theoph. f. Sta. Jacobi. Lond. Equ. Aur. filius natu mi- 

Will you do the Georgia Historical Society the courtesy 
to compare this copy carefully with the record of original 
entry on the University Register, and tell us if it is correct? 
If it is not, will you please send me an exact copy of the re- 
cord, together with a translation of it in accordance with the 
usual meaning and understanding of such entries? The 
figures "1704" are especially to be examined with care, for 
it has been claimed that this date should be 1714. Are the 
figures clear in the record? Is it your understanding that 
the figures "16" signify that he was sixteen years old when 
he entered? 

Will you also please verify the date of admission of Lewis 
Oglethorpe into Corpus Christi College? This is given as 
March 16, 1698-9. 

The Georgia Historical Society will greatly appreciate 
any courtesy you may show it in ascertaining definitely 
these facts and writing me at your earliest convenience. 

Very respectfully, 


Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist. Soc. 
Corpus Christi College, Oxford, 

December 23, 1910 

To the Secretary of the Georgia Historical Society: 

Dear Sir: 

In respect to the date of the admission of James Edward 
Oglethorpe to the University, I have relied on the help of 
Mr. R. Lane Poole, keeper of the archives of the University, 
as I was myself leaving Oxford at the time of receiving your 
letter. Tlie information which he has kindly sent to me is 
as follows : 

In the Register of Matriculations (reference letters in the 
Universitv Archives A I). "Tulv 9 1714 term. S. Trin. Ja- 
cobus Oglethorpe E C. C. C. 16 Theoph. f. Sti. Jacobi Lond. 
Eq. filiu natu minor." (Archives ref: A F.) 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 49 

In the Autograph Subscription Book Oglethorpe signs 
himself under the same date, July 9, 1714. "James Ogle- 
thorpe e C. C. C. Eq : Aur. filius natu minor." (Archives 
ref: A F.) 

Mr. R. Lane Poole adds that the 16 following C. C. C. is 
undoubtedly his age, since it is the regular practice to write 
it so. There can be no question as to the accuracy of ^he 
dates, owing to the double entry and the order of admis- 

In the case of Lewis Oglethorpe, he appears in the Sub- 
scription Book as, "Lewis Oglethorpe e C. C. C. Eq : filus 
natu max." In the Matriculations Register, March 16, 
] 698-9, is the date and the age 15 is added after his college. 
So that in this case the date you quote is quite correct ac- 
cording to the University Books. Tlie translation would be 
as follows : "July 9, 1714, Trinity Term, James Oglethorpe 
of C. C. C. (aged) ]6, younger son of Theophilus (Ogle- 
thorpe) Knight, of St. James' London." 

The dates are confirmed by the Buttery Books of the Col- 
lege. Ludov. Oglethorpe appears in 1698. Jac. Ogle- 
thorpe in 1714. The latter name disappears from the books 
on May 3, 1717. It was re-entered on June 25, 1719, and fi- 
nally disappeared on October 20, 1727. 

I trust that this information will make it quite clear to 
your Society that the date of admission of James Oglethorpe 
was the later date of those you suggest. The information 
as to the Corpus Buttery Books I have taken from the His- 
tory of the College by the late president, T. Fowler, publish- 
ed by the Oxford Historical Society. I have no doubt it is 
correct, but will verify the references on my return to Oxford 
and advise you at once if I discover any error. I should 
post this information at least by the 20th January. 

If there is or will be any account of the monument in the 
press which you could without trouble forward to me, I 
should be very much obliged, as it could not fail to interest 
the College. I should be glad to get it reprinted in our Col- 
lege Magazine. 

I am 

Yours faithfully, 


Dean of C. C. C 

so A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

From these investigations it is perfectly clear that Ogle- 
thorpe, the founder of Georgia, was named James Edward, 
and that he was born December 22, 1696. 

From these records it likewise appears that there was art 
elder brother, named also James, who was born June 1, 
1689, and who died in infancy June 15, 1690. This fact of 
an elder brother James, evidently unknown to the early 
biographers of Oglethorpe, has created all the confusion. 
The typographical error of "1704" for 1714 as the year of 
his entrance into Corpus Christi College tended to increase 
this confusion- It was for the very purpose of determining 
this point that an eflfort was made to obtain the record of 
the names of the other children together with the dates of 
their births and baptisms. While the record of some of 
these seem not to be complete, there can be no doubt of 
the correctness of the record of James Edward, and this 
is the only matter that need concern us. 

It will be observed that Oglethorpe upon entering Corpus 
Christi College gave his age at 16 years, when in reality 
he was a little over 17 years. 

An interesting fact revealed by the Buttery Books of the 
college is the statement that Oglethorpe's name appears on 
the books from July 9, 1714 to May 3, 1717, then disappears 
from May 3, 1717 to June 25, 1719, when it was re-entered 
and continues to appear till October 20, 1727. It is well 
known that Oglethorpe left Oxford soon after he entered 
to join the army of Prince Eugene on the Continent, and 
that he returned to England in 1718. But as he was elected 
to Pa:rliament from Surrey in 1722, it is difficult to under- 
stand these entries on the Buttery Books of the college from 
1719 to 1727. Did he actually return to Oxford after his 
military experience on the Continent to complete his course, 
or was his name thus continued on the books for some tech- 
nical reason without his actual presence? This matter is 
only incidental to the question of his name and the date of 
his birth, but it is an interesting one nevertheless, and doubt- 
less it can be explained by those more familiar with the 
early forms of English university life. 

It must be remembered that the date of Oglethorpe's birth 
as here given is expressed in the old style of reckoning time, 
as the new style was not adopted in England till 1752. Ex- 
pressed in new style, therefore, Oglethorpe was born Janu- 
ary 2, 1697. 

The facts herein set forth and the evidence upon which 
they are based are thus presented in full, in order that the 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. $1 

matter so long in doubt may be definitely and finally set at 

Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist. Society. 



Troops participating in the unveiling of 
The Oglethorpe Monument, 

Savannah, Ga., Nov. 23rd, 1910. 

The ceremonies incident to the unveiling of the Oglethorpe 
Monument will be held in Chippewa Square, the site of 
the monument, and will begin at 11 :30 o'clock, A. M., Nov. 
23, 1910. 

The following instructions governing the troops partici- 
pating are issued for the information and guidance of all 
concerned : 

1. The Marshal's Staff will consist of: 

1st Lieut. E. T. Weisel, Coast Artillery Corps, Adjutant, 


Captain H. C. Williams, 2nd U. S. Field Artillery, 

Captain Wm. R. Dancy, 1st Infantry, N. G. Ga. 

Captain R. H. Mason, 2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga. 
Chaplain M. G. Doran, U. S. Coast Artillery Corps, 

1st Lieut Garrard Haines, C. A C, N. G. Ga. 
The Aids will report in Dress Uniform, mounted, to the 
Marshal at the Monument at 11 :15 o'clock, A. M. 

2. The troops will be posted about the Monument dur- 
ing the ceremonies as follows : 

a. 2nd and 3rd Battalions 17th U. S. Infantry. 

Provisional Battalion U. S. Coast Artillery Corps, 
U. S. Marines and U. S. Sailors in column of masses in 
the order named on Perry Street, west of the Monument, 
facing east, head of the column resting on Bull Street. 

b. 2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga., Cadet Corps University of 
Georgia, Barnesville Cadets, and Benedictine College Ca- 
dets, in column of masses in the order named, on McDon- 

^2 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument 

ough Street, west of the Monument facing east, head of 
column resting on line of curbing west of Square. 

c. 1st Infantry N. G. Ga., 1st Battalion 5th Infantry N. 
G. Ga., in column of masses in the order named on Hull 
Street west of the Monument facing east, head of col- 
umn resting on line of curbing west of Square. 

d. Battalion Coast Artillery Corps N. G. Ga., and Na- 
val Reserves in line in the order named on Hull Street 
facing south, left resting on Bull Street. 

e. 1st Battery Field Artillery N. G. Ga. in column of 
sections c>n Hull Street, facing west, head of column rest- 
ing on Bull Street. 

f. 1st Squadron 11th Cavalry, Troop A. N. G. Ga., in 
column of platoons in the order named on Bull Street, north 
of Monument, head of column resting on Hull Street. 

3. When the drapery is removed from the Statue, one 
long blast will be sounded by bugle at the direction of the 
Marshal ; each organization will be brought to "Present 
Arms," by their respective Commanding Officers ; one long 
blast following will be the signal for resuming "Order 

4. The various organizations will be in their places as 
indicated in paragraph 2 hereof by 11 :15 o'clock A. M. 

5. Upon completion of the ceremonies at the Monu- 
ment the troops will form column of squads and take up the 
march south on Bull Street, in the following order : 

2nd and 3rd Batt. 17th Infantry, 
Batt. U. S. Coast Artillery Corps. 
U. S. Marines, 
U. S. Sailors, 
2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga. 
1st Infantry, N. G. Ga. 
1st Batt. 5th Infantry, N. G. Ga. 
Batt. Coast Artillery Corps, N, G. Ga. 
Naval Reserves, 

Cadet Corps, University of Georgia, 
Cadet Corps, Barnesville, 
Cadet Corps, Benedictine College, 
1st Battery Field Artillery N- G. Ga. 
1st Squadron, 11th U. S. Cavalry, 
Troop A. N. G. Ga. 

The column will turn west on Gaston Street to Barnard 
Street, then south on Barnard Street. 

To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 53 

The troops will then be formed in the Park Extension 
in line of masses, facing east, right resting on Park Avenue. 
In forming, organizations will turn east from Barnard 
Street on the streets indicated below and will take position 
in the Park Extension in Column of Masses at points which 
will be indicated to the organization Cornmanders : 

1st Battery and all Cavalry turn east on Hall Street, Na- 
val Reserves and Cadet Organizations turn east on Gwin- 
nett Street, 

1st Infantry, N. G. Ga.. turn east on Bolton Street, 
2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga., turn east on Waldburg Street, 
17th U. S. Infantry, U. S. Coast Artillery Corps, U. S. 
Marines, and U. S. Sailors turn east on Park Avenue. 

6, The troops will be reviewed by the Governors of 
Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama, who will be in au- 
tomobiles on the east side of the Park Extension at the 
intersection of Bolton and Drayton Streets, at which point 
the prescribed salute will be rendered. 

7. After passing the reviewing officers the column will 
continue north on Drayton Street and each organization 
will stand dismissed after passing Hall Street. No or- 
ganization will be halted until it has cleared the column. 

Colonel, Coast Artillery Corps, Marshal, 

Official : EDWARD T. WEISEL, 

1st Lieutenant, C. A. C, Adjutant. 

The United States Regulars were encamped at Thirty- 
first street and Waters Road. The camp was named by 
Col, Wisser Camp Alexander R. Lawton, in honor of the 
late Gen. Alexander R. Lawton, of Savannah. 

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